Watership Down

by

Richard Adams

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A wandering rabbit who lives in the open. Plural: Hlessil.

Hlessi Quotes in Watership Down

The Watership Down quotes below are all either spoken by Hlessi or refer to Hlessi. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scribner edition of Watership Down published in 1972.
Chapter 27 Quotes

“But surely it alters them very much, living like that?” asked Dandelion.

“Very much indeed,” replied Holly. “Most of them can’t do anything but what they’re told. They’ve never been out of Efrafa and never smelled an enemy. The one aim of every rabbit in Efrafa is to get into the Owsla, because of the privileges: and the one aim of everyone in the Owsla is to get into the Council. The Council have the best of everything. But the Owsla have to keep very strong and tough. They take it in turn to do what they call Wide Patrol. They go out over the country—all round the place—living in the open for days at a time. It’s partly to find out anything they can, and partly to train them and make them tough and cunning. Any hlessil they find they pick up and bring back to Efrafa. If they won’t come, they kill them. They reckon hlessil a danger, because they may attract the attention of men.”

Related Characters: Dandelion (speaker), Holly (speaker)
Related Symbols: Efrafa
Page Number: 234
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Watership Down LitChart as a printable PDF.
Watership Down PDF

Hlessi Term Timeline in Watership Down

The timeline below shows where the term Hlessi appears in Watership Down. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 21: “For El-ahrairah to Cry”
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
Violence and Power Theme Icon
...following Hazel’s group’s tracks, and eventually made it to the heather. They encountered a scratched-up hlessi who told them that a large warren was not far off. Holly and the others... (full context)
Chapter 27: “You Can’t Imagine It Unless You’ve Been There”
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
...a “wide patrol” which is both meant to toughen up new members and scout for hlessil. When the Efrafan Owsla comes upon a lone rabbit, they give him a choice: he... (full context)
Chapter 34: General Woundwort
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
...the Council has had to take “strong measures” to contain them. A group of four hlessil who’d joined the Right Hind Mark have recently escaped, and Woundwort is short on good... (full context)
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...some when Campion approaches to inform Woundwort that the Wide Patrol has picked up a hlessi—who has stated that he has come a long way to join Efrafa. Woundwort is puzzled... (full context)
Chapter 40: The Way Back
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
Violence and Power Theme Icon
Authoritarianism vs. Democracy Theme Icon
...are both slowed by their injuries, and the does know little of life as a hlessil; they have to be taught how to move, how to catch scents, and how to... (full context)
Chapter 41: The Story of Rowsby Woof and the Fairy Wogdog
The Epic Journey  Theme Icon
...story about El-ahrairah. After their encounter with the Black Rabbit, El-ahrairah and Rabscuttle find themselves hlessils, making their way through frosty fields in the middle of winter. While passing through the... (full context)